The leaves have fallen and the autumn crisp has grown sharp, marking the turn of the season into one of JD’s most cherished times of the year: No-Shave November.
For years, No-Shave November has been celebrated at JD by students and staff alike. It’s a time where worries are left behind, disagreements are cast aside, and razors are far from sight. “It’s an opportunity for my stache to really shine,” explained student Mark Bratslavsky. “It feels so freeing to be in this state; I feel so at one with nature,” he blissfully reported whilst sitting on his basement couch playing Call of Duty.
Mr. Gasparini, for one, loves No-Shave November for the camaraderie and school spirit that it brings out in the JD community. “What better way to say ‘We are JD’ than with an abundance of facial hair?”
Unfortunately, the ordinary glory of this season has been somewhat compromised by the global pandemic. For one, masks make it nearly impossible to show off your fresh follicles. In response to this tragedy, certain students have started the trend of taking a selfie every morning, then printing out and taping the selfie to themselves before school to display their new growth. The effect is indeed amusing, but just not quite the same.
Furthermore, one of the biggest contributors to No-Shave November — the Girls Swimming and Diving team — has been removed from the tradition with their season being pushed to March. “It’s honestly such a bummer,” lamented a disappointed Lucy Heflin. “Last year, my legs were the hairiest they’d ever been during swim season. I believe the top measurement was 3.2 inches. I was so excited to break the record this November.” Keeping in high spirits, however, some swimmers have continued the beloved ritual anyway, reporting to Yampage that allowing their leg hair to grow untamed “evokes the fond memory of times past.” And not to worry, the team also reported plans to partake in novel “Man-Legs March” during their spring season.
Even with the turmoil and tumult, JD students have demonstrated relentless dedication to keeping No-Shave November as engaging and inclusive as ever. Teachers are highly encouraged to participate, and many have been bringing excellent beard, stache, and sideburn game to the table. One teacher, however, has become a cause of controversy through some hairy actions this season.
Over the past few months, Mr. Comfort’s goatee has become a well-known and revered symbol within the Jamesville-Dewitt community. In a thoroughly administered survey, 98% of students expressed “sheer adoration” for The Goatee, and 45% went as far as to say that it has been “the sole force getting them out of bed in the morning and the primary reason they continue to exist.”
It’s therefore understandable that when news got out that Comfort had shaved, shock waves were sent through the entire populace. Many were left lost, wondering what to do in a meaningless world without The Goatee. Alice Yi, a student in Mr. Comfort’s AP Biology class, expressed concern for her teacher’s wellbeing. “Once The Goatee was gone, so was his spirit. He just came into class so much less confident and enthusiastic — even through the mask, you could tell his lack of facial hair was taking a toll on his emotional and spiritual wellbeing.” Earth Science teacher Mr. Keenan concurred, “There has been a tangible shift in Mr. Comfort’s mood since the Great Shaving.”
Luckily, being the proactive and compassionate students that they are, some JD students have taken initiative to help solve this problem. A petition was started on change.org last week to “Bring back Mr.Comforts [sic] goatee,” and since then it has been circulating and gaining traction among concerned students and staff. When asked about the inspiration behind the petition, alleged creator Aiden Usher explained that, “Mr. Comfort’s goatee was truly a source of joy for so many of us students. I knew that action had to be taken in order to resurrect this precious icon; a symbol of strength and adaptability amongst chaos; order in a world where so little can be depended upon.” Usher added, “Please, sign the petition. This may be our last chance to save our beloved No-Shave November.”
The emotional and spiritual weight that The Goatee carries for JD students is obvious. It is now up to you, Yamfam, to take up this cause. With such a dedicated and driven community, bringing back this treasured icon can be possible. For the sake of No-Shave November — and 45% of JD students’ mental wellbeing — please sign the petition linked below.